Bartholomeus van den Berge (d. 1535)

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Bartholomeus van den Berge, a miller at Dieteren in the Dutch province of Limburg, was baptized in his house in the fall of 1534 by Jan Smeitgen in the presence of 10 or 12 persons. Smeitgen took water "from out a small jar" and spoke the old formula for baptism. For reasons of safety, Bartholomeus with his wife, Clementia Heynen, who was also rebaptized, went to Maastricht (Dutch province of Limburg); here, during the night of 28 January 1535, he was captured with 14 other members of the congregation. While all the others recanted, including his wife, Bartholomeus remained steadfast. He was burned to death on 1 February 1535, on the Vrijthof at Maastricht. He was omitted from the martyr books perhaps because he was affected to some extent by the Münster influence. This might be called a kind of naive Münster infection, a kind which was found among many Anabaptists in 1534 and 1535, and especially in the church at Maastricht, where Rothmann's book, Van der Wrake (Concerning Vengeance), was read. At his trial Bartholomeus said that he had heard "that God will punish the world. That a king would come either from Münster or Amsterdam, and all the brethren would follow him."


Bax, Willem. Het Protestantisme in het bisdom Luik en vooral te Maastricht, 1557-1612. 's-Gravenhage : M. Nijhoff, 1941: 70, 72, 113-114.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1953

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MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Bartholomeus van den Berge (d. 1535)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 7 Dec 2023.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1953). Bartholomeus van den Berge (d. 1535). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 7 December 2023, from


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 239. All rights reserved.

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